A Welcome Environment

by Jay Nordlinger

Lately, we’ve been talking about NPR and similar media, because of the Williams affair. (I’m talkin’ Juan, of course.) “Defund NPR!” goes the cry. “Defund PBS!” goes a companion cry. I’m a crier of such cries myself.

Anyway, had kind of an interesting experience this morning. I thought I was to be on Wisconsin Public Radio at 11:30 EST. The show was The Kathleen Dunn Show, which I have done in the past. We messed up the timing a little — the studio had meant to say 10:30 EST. Well, I was walking along the Hudson River, when I checked my BlackBerry: to find an e-mail from the producer.

Long story shorter: I joined the show, standing by the river, on my cellphone, in howling winds. I said, “I’ve been called windy before, but . . .” And, “If I have to shout, no problem: People will just think it’s cable.” (Obnoxious to quote your clever lines, isn’t it?)

In any event, Kathleen was gracious, prepared, and thoroughly professional, as usual. I hope it doesn’t cause her any trouble with her employer if I say that she’s very good about letting conservative views be aired. I assume she’s on the left — why wouldn’t she be? But she is happy for a righty to speak his piece. Therefore, she is worth her weight in gold. If we’re to have public radio — let it be good. Let it be — where have I heard this phrase? — fair and balanced.

Incidentally, I once had a conversation with a veteran AP reporter in Davos. (This is a different but related topic.) I said, “You know, I’ve been reading your dispatches for years, and I assume you’re on the left — because everyone is — but I can’t tell what your politics are, from reading you.” She said, “Oh, bless you, my son.” She actually kissed me. I said, “Are you the last one? Are you the last one to keep his politics out of his copy?” She said, “Yes, I’m the last one.”

It’s a very easy thing to do. It’s just that people — that wire-service reporters, and other reporters — don’t want to.

Anyway, just wanted to give a cheer or two for Wisconsin Public Radio, or at least a slice of it.